“Scream Queens” Recap: All Of These Clues Are Terrible

It took this long to reenact “Psycho,” face-kick Antonin Scalia, and turn Nick Jonas lumbersexual? You’re getting slow, Ryan Murphy.

Last week, Scream Queens finally visited its home planet, a derelict insane asylum for crazy-eyed portrait ladies, to reveal that Dean Jamie Lee is at DEFCON Cuckoo Bananas and definitely decapitated her ex-husband in an elaborate blood tableau. Fun game.

But now that Dean Jamie Lee is done singing, “I’m too sexy for a living husband,” she must turn her golden touch to the next biggest crisis facing humanity, Grace’s inability to shut up about that goddamn bathtub.

As usual, Grace is flopping around the dean’s office going, “bathtub, bathtub, bathtub, bathtub” and doodling Mrs. Grace Bathtub Murder over all her notebooks. This monster must be stopped. Unfortunately, Dean Jamie Lee’s dual strategies of “What’s a bathtub?” and “It’s not my fault you’re too dumb and selfish to solve this murder” don’t work. Grace just uses a lot of stabbing imagery, then storms out. This is the most I’ve ever liked Grace.

Free once again to bask in the serenity of not having to look at Grace, Dean Jamie Lee heads back to her apartment to say, “Hey, everyone. I’m going to do a semi-faithful reenactment of my mom’s shower scene from Psycho now, because of GIFs and definitely also the plot. I sure hope a silhouette doesn’t follow me upstairs wielding a knife. OOPS.”

Scream Queens Psycho
This scene is really the whole point of the episode. It’s a Psycho shower with an episode in it, and let’s not pretend it’s the other way around. Still, it was a memorable and charmingly self-referential wink of a moment! One that also made no sense and had nothing to do with anything. The Scream Queens special.

Everything is going exactly to Psycho plan until the Red Devil tries to fulfill its role of ALL THE STABBING, only to find that the dean is gone. She’s way too smart for elaborate recreations of classic horror films, delivering an A+ slap-knockout to the Red Devil. “I saw that movie 50 times!” Please, please, please let that be autobiographical.

The dean’s not out of the woods yet.

Scream Queens Jamie Lee Curtis
Baron Knifeburger soon regains consciousness and welcomes in the other Red Devil, Lord Axeington. Now it’s a party. And speaking of things that make no sense and have nothing to do with anything, Gigi is also here wearing an Antonin Scalia mask solely so that the writers have a chance to express their feelings about that particular anthropomorphic rotten pudding in an industrial garbage bag. OK. Why not?

The appearance of Antonin Scalia forces Jamie Lee Curtis to unleash the secret martial art she learned in the illegal fighting pits of Hong Kong (best sentence ever) as she kickboxes her way through two devils and their Scalian overlord while exclaiming, “The homosexual lifestyle is not destructive to the fabric of American society!” Face kick!

Scream Queens Jamie Lee Curtis Scalia
Staring down the fiery maw of Antonin Scalia would make anyone reassess her life, so Dean Jamie Lee immediately recalls Grace to apologize(ish). Now that the Red Devils have decided to target someone important, she’s willing to cooperate and fling Grace a manila folder labeled “Big Bad Top Secret Bathtub Facts.”

As promised, the Special Folder Of Answers contains the identity of the garbage girl who ruined that perfectly good party by getting baby slime and death stink everywhere, like an idiot. And surprisingly, it’s not Fakename McSuckit. Instead, it’s Sophia Doyle. Grace goes, “That’s not my mom’s name. Maybe she’s my mom!” That’s the spirit. Also, can Grace read?

Back at Kappa, Chanel is wearing a top with a snake on it. You know, because she’s a snake. Goodness. Such elegant symbolism. Scream Queens is the new Shakespeare.

Scream Queens Chanel
Chanel has called a meeting of the Associated Fat Heifers to find out how to pin these murders on Grace and Zayday since everyone else would be so much happier if they were in prison. Unfortunately, all of their clues are terrible, except for Chanel #5’s revelation that Zayday Williams is an anagram of “I may slay Liz Daw.” As far as I’m concerned, case closed.

Chanel #3 has a savvier approach, offering Officer Niecy upwards of $3 million to get on the case.

Scream Queens Niecy Nash
Unfortunately, since Zayday isn’t currently wearing a “Hello, my name is the murderer” sticker, Officer Niecy’s got nothing, other than exchanging theories with Candle Girl about the murderous potential of Zayday’s stank eye.

Oh yeah, Candle Girl! I forgot she was a thing. So did the Red Devil, I think, because while Candle Girl is sitting around going, “My best friend’s name is nobody” and showing a remarkably boring knowledge of candles, the Red Devil sneaks up and says, “Wait, why didn’t I kill you like three episodes ago? Stab stab stab.”

Now that Candle Girl has gone to the aggressively vanilla-scented fire hazard in the sky, and since Chanel’s plan to watch Chad get distracted by his own hotness is already ruined anyway, the Chanels decide that they totally loved What’s-Her-Candle. Out of that love, they organize a very fitting candlelight vigil as a tribute to her excessive weirdness. I mean memory. We’ll always have…something creepy about candles.

Back on The Grace and Pete Show, coming this spring to all your nightmares, Grace goes, “Blah, blah, blah feelings, benevolent mommy spirit.” Pete does a really good job staying conscious, then suggests that they keep trying to solve the murders by investigating whether the Hag of Shady Lane ever made a quick pit stop at the insane asylum.

That can only mean one thing! My hero, the “I paint them all” lady, is back to continue painting them all and saving the world, probably. Pete asks whether she remembers a woman coming in with a big bag of baby crazy. Girl, don’t even play. Does she remember? Yes, she remembers. And do you know why? Because she PAINTS THEM ALL. How hard is this to understand?

I Paint Them All rifles through her six billion paintings for exactly two seconds to come up with a painting of the Hag of Shady Lane. National hero.

Scream Queens
Apparently, this is supposed to be Gigi. I thought it was Angie Harmon. I KNOW WHO DID IT. I Paint Them All then unearths another painting of a completely different woman holding two babies, and that’s also supposed to be Gigi. Fine. Whatever. The bathtub baby is two babies! I sure hope that gets awkward.

Grace steals the Angie Harmon fan art and runs straight to Gigi to go, “I think you’re the murderer, so if you want to murder me, hi.” But Gigi doesn’t murder her. She has underlings for that, and she left her Antonin Scalia mask in her other applique vest anyway. Instead, Gigi announces that Grace is crazy garbage who’s weirdly obsessed with her own father (fair point) before revealing that she herself is a psychotic demon who got self-engaged to Wes and has apparently never cut an onion in her entire life because she’s terrible at it. Yep. No messes here.

Over at Kappa, Chanel is learning a valuable life lesson: when you threaten to murder Kate Middleton, people listen to you. Especially Scotland Yard. That’s how she’s able to coerce them into finding damning evidence against Zayday and Talking Bowling Ball.

Scream Queens Chanel
Except they’re not great at this. Aside from learning that Chanel #5 wants to poison Chanel (obviously), their primary discovery is that Grace’s mom is not, in fact, dead bathtub girl. Shock! Instead, Grace’s mom is the worst person ever born who got arrested for every heinous crime, including drunk driving with a baby on top of her car and hooking up with Wes during Dead Bathtub Night, even though he was wearing a backwards baseball cap and clearly 40 at the time. “Looks like the bitch apple doesn’t fall far from the bitch tree”…and other poems, by Chanel Oberlin.

Obviously, Chanel births 60 litters of excitement kittens while waiting to tell Grace all about what a catastrophic non-saint her mother was. She can barely contain herself as she does a line-item reenactment of all the larceny, arson, and drunk driving deaths, finishing with a rousing rendition of “Your dumb dead mother was nothing more than a drunk degenerate slut.” Ah, it’s one of Chanel’s finest performances. Getting slapped was totally worth it.

Grace runs home to her dad to go, “Father dearest, may I accuse you of twelve murders, pretty please?” Since her mom, her dad, and Murderous Gigi would have all known each other in college, Grace concludes that Wes must be in on the plot now. Though Wes passionately professes his innocence by talking about how much arson he has done, ominously creeping in and out of the shadows like a vengeful lion, and staring at a mirror to contemplate what he has become. You know, like not-murderers do.

Scream Queens Wes
Once Grace teleports out, Gigi appears right on schedule to go, “Ew. Your daughter seems like a crazy moron, and if you don’t imprison her in that ramshackle painting asylum, you’re probably a terrible father. Also, I’m not the murderer.”

In other important news, Officer Niecy has now been appointed as Kappa’s head “try to make the murder less” lady, chosen for her expertise in “standing right there” and “please stop talking.” In her zeal for the job, Officer Niecy went and blasted herself with a Chanel gun, and she has the furry vest to prove it. She’s a real Chanel.

Except for the fact that she’s trying to make the Chanels do things like clean up freeway trash and (horror of horrors) apologize for ruining other people’s lives. Uh oh. Chanel goes full “and your little dog too” at the news.

Scream Queens Chanel
Oh, Officer Niecy knows how to deal with that. While Chanel is busy dousing the world with gasoline at the idea of an apology, Officer Niecy puts her in her place by threatening to hop back on the Chad Radwell Ab Express (beware of goats) unless Chanel apologizes to Grace, for some reason. Low blow.

So, in spite of the fact that this whole “your mother is dead garbage” reveal is basically the nicest thing Chanel has ever said to anyone, she apologizes by communing with Grace over their mommy issues, then pretends to turn over a new leaf of generosity. BO-RING. Isn’t there a workout montage we could we watching right now? There is?!?

Nick Jonas is here to remind us that he’s still on this show, kind of, and introduce us to the electrocuted plague rat he glued to his chin and named My Beard.

Scream Queens Nick Jonas Beard
Nice to meet you, LumberJonas. LumberJonas is wearing a shirt that says “Everyday I’m Mustling” and is currently undercover as Joaquin Phoenix. Obviously. He then does a quarter of a bench press to show off his biceps and says, “Twitter, twitter, facebook, viral, social media, mission accomplished,” before disappearing again. Also, apparently Gigi is becoming a real liability to the cause and needs to go. Another life lesson courtesy of Scream Queens: Never be Antonin Scalia.

But wait, who’s going to save Liz Daw?!?!?

Quote of the week:
“I’m an American. I don’t have to understand anything.” – Professor Chanel explaining manifest destiny.

Committed TV addict, indoor enthusiast, and side-eye aficionado who loves long-lost evil twins and spies who are terrible at spying.